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João Almeida - Bota Lume

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I guess that's what they wanted people to believe in order to justify the "co-leader" policy...

In truth I find that very hard to accept...
Nobody talks much about it but stage 1 was a good example: Remco had never lost a TT to Almeida and, in the first stage where they were both fresh Almeida beats him....
that was a major red flag and should have alerted people that the whole hype created around Remco was solely that... a hype!
I'm not sure if a 8 km TT means that much, but yeah maybe Remco would have beaten Almeida if he was 100% yet. We'll never know.
 
I guess that's what they wanted people to believe in order to justify the "co-leader" policy...

In truth I find that very hard to accept...
Nobody talks much about it but stage 1 was a good example: Remco had never lost a TT to Almeida and, in the first stage where they were both fresh Almeida beats him....
that was a major red flag and should have alerted people that the whole hype created around Remco was solely that... a hype!

Sure, but the lost over 4 minutes in the first week on a stage that wasn't even that hard. He has no one else to blame but himself for not being a co-leader anymore after that.
 
That's easy to say in hindsight.
Actually, that was very easy to predict if you give leadership to a rider who's been on the bike for 2,5 months.

He didn't seem worthy to be the solo leader after the first week.
In the GT it's the result at the end of the 3rd week that counts, not at the end of the 1st one.
 
The thing is, Almeida should've been a solo leader just from the beginning with Remco as his dom. No matter what happened on stage 4.
Don't agree with me? Then take a look at current GC standings.
Remco should and would never have started as a dom, not in your wildest dreams, no matter how hard you keep yelling. And certainly not after "the leader" lost 4 and a half minutes on one day because he simply wasn't good enough. Riding this Giro was always about Remco's future, to see how he would hold up, where he could learn, what his weaknesses were. You may think this was one huge failure for Remco, but it was far from that. The problem is that Remco himself and his fans actually started hoping, against better judgement, that he might be able to pull off some stunt. And while that may not have been the case, him NOT riding as a dom, has given him and the team a lot of crucial information.

Had Evenepoel been a dom for Almeida, he would have stuck with Almeida on the climb where Almeida got dropped. He wouldn't have tried to follow Bernal & co. He wouldn't have known he still lacks punch. Just like on the stage Bernal won, where he was badly positioned, it wouldn't even have mattered. Had he worked for Almeida on the Montalcino stage, he would have probably not even tried to hang on, just suck Serry's wheel to the finish at an easy pace after he did his job, not realizing how vulnerable he really was there. Had he been Almeida's dom, he would have lost dozens of minutes by the time they got to the Zoncolan stage, and Ineos would not have tried dropping him on the descent. He wouldn't have known just how much work he still has to do in order to compete, how big of a weakness his bikehandling, descending, positioning etc is.

I'm sure the team would have wanted Almeida to perform better in the first week, but this was the Giro of Remco's return, and Remco is the future of the team. What they have now is tons of valuable information about Remco. What they might have had, in your scenario, was Almeida currently being 9th instead of 10th.
 
Or actually fighting for top 5, I still think Almeida would had lost less than 2 minutes if the team was with him and he had a clear mind. But nonetheless I don't think Remco should have been a domestique for João. And I agree the info about Remco weaknesses is super important.
 
The thing is, Almeida should've been a solo leader just from the beginning with Remco as his dom. No matter what happened on stage 4.
Don't agree with me? Then take a look at current GC standings.
I disagree. I think co-leaders was the right call at the beginning. What they probably should have done different is not using Almeida strictly as a dom after his only bad day so early into the race. They should have maybe give him more freedom to do his own race, but it was a difficult decision at the time.
 
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The level in the Tour is still higher, though. If Roglic, Pogacar and Thomas in form for instance manage to stay on their bikes, Almeida has no chance of a podium against them in the next two years. And I'm not convinced by Bora as a GC team, by the way.
He's young and can still develop. But at his current level I think he's capable of a top5 at best. (Of course so much can happen... others crash out and stuff... his level is very high, but a Tour podium is tough stuff.)
Roglic and pogacar i agree, thomas no. Joao almeida could be very well better than thomas. Thomas is not on the lunatic level of pogi and roglic.
 
I disagree. I think co-leaders was the right call at the beginning. What they probably should have done different is not using Almeida strictly as a dom after his only bad day so early into the race. They should have maybe give him more freedom to do his own race, but it was a difficult decision at the time.
I wrote a long post on the previous page (i think). Basically, the team was really weak and a huge letdown imho. Had Knox, Masnada, Serry, Honoré... been better, then Almeida wouldn't have been alone when he got dropped. And Almeida wouldn't have needed to wait for Remco in the sterrati stage, because someone else could have helped him. Had the team been stronger, they could have supported both Remco and João. But the team was too weak, so at a certain moment, they needed to make a decision. Unfortunately for Almeida, he was 5 minutes down in GC at that moment.
 
He's not on their general level, but he has a very strong team and if he's in really good form he can compete with at least Roglic. (Pogacar, okay, who shall beat him when he's in form?)
On that case, it doesn't matter if ineos have a strong team around thomas, it doesn't make difference because pogi is so good that he just needs to follow thomas and ineos train in the mountains like he did last year with jumbo, and on the itt he beats thomas.
Ineos train works when they have a leader like froome or wiggins who can make differences on the itt for everyone, and then in the mountains they use the train to neutralize everyone.
I think roglic is better than thomas on the itt, and in the mountains he also have a train.
 
Remco should and would never have started as a dom, not in your wildest dreams, no matter how hard you keep yelling. And certainly not after "the leader" lost 4 and a half minutes on one day because he simply wasn't good enough. Riding this Giro was always about Remco's future, to see how he would hold up, where he could learn, what his weaknesses were. You may think this was one huge failure for Remco, but it was far from that. The problem is that Remco himself and his fans actually started hoping, against better judgement, that he might be able to pull off some stunt. And while that may not have been the case, him NOT riding as a dom, has given him and the team a lot of crucial information.
I wrote that Remco should've started as Almieda's dom mainly because, as you know, I'm against of Remco starting this race at all, In this context if he really had to do this race and they wanted not to put any pressure on him nor provoke unnecessary expectations, let's give him a helper role and make it clear for his fans, that in current condition he's not able to go for GC and that he's here just for experience.
I see it very disrepectful towards the whole team to make them to sarcrifice for 3 weeks (as well as sarcrifice their co-leader's justified ambitions) only for the Belgian Wunderkind having a possibility to see what are his weaknesses or how far into the race he will crack.

Was the fact that you're not able to succesfully compete in a 3 week race with 2,5 months of training and zero races in your legs really that much needed to be confirmed?

Had Evenepoel been a dom for Almeida, he would have stuck with Almeida on the climb where Almeida got dropped. He wouldn't have tried to follow Bernal & co. He wouldn't have known he still lacks punch. Just like on the stage Bernal won, where he was badly positioned, it wouldn't even have mattered. Had he worked for Almeida on the Montalcino stage, he would have probably not even tried to hang on, just suck Serry's wheel to the finish at an easy pace after he did his job, not realizing how vulnerable he really was there. Had he been Almeida's dom, he would have lost dozens of minutes by the time they got to the Zoncolan stage, and Ineos would not have tried dropping him on the descent. He wouldn't have known just how much work he still has to do in order to compete, how big of a weakness his bikehandling, descending, positioning etc is.

Haven't he already known that he lacks punch for quite a long time? What was supposed to be changed in that matter if after the crash he didn't have oppurtunity to work on it at all. Wasn't that obvious that after high speed crash on a descent you're only gonna suck even more in terms of bike handling? And it applies to all the other examples that you gave further. During that 2,5 months he was just coming back to his most basic fitness. And I will say it again. We still can't say how much all those weaknesses were caused by lack of preparation and the injury and how much they were indications of his natural limitations and shortcomings.
Then all this crucial information that they supposedly gathered from this start is pretty much useless. But even if they were super valuable, as I said, I can't see it fair to sarcrifice other riders' ambitions just for this purpose.

I'm sure the team would have wanted Almeida to perform better in the first week, but this was the Giro of Remco's return, and Remco is the future of the team. What they have now is tons of valuable information about Remco. What they might have had, in your scenario, was Almeida currently being 9th instead of 10th.

All right then. I agree with the fact that if those information about Remco were valid (but they're apparently not that much) it could be actually very useful thing to have when preparing for the next GTs. But why the fck they had to use this particular Giro 2021 for this purpose with Remco not even completed a half of a proper preparation period? Why not Vuelta, why not Giro 2022? Does he really have to be the next Pogacar winning his first Tour at 22 (while imo not being that naturally predisopsed GT rider like Tadej)? Let's choose some long-term goals and try to acheive them one by one. Not trying to win all cycling races on the planet and becoming cycling god before turning 23.

That's how I see it. ;)
 
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I'm portuguese and i would love to defend joao almeida on this situation, but it was joao almeida's fault. He lost 5 min on a 2 category climb on stage 4, after that, obviously he would work for remco who was in better position. If he didn't lost 5 min on that stage, he would never work for remco. It was a good decision by quick step after stage four, don't blame the team for doing that, they saw in that moment remco in good shape and position, and with joao almeida in very difficult situation on gc, the most logic thing, would be joao work for remco.
 
Remco should and would never have started as a dom, not in your wildest dreams, no matter how hard you keep yelling. And certainly not after "the leader" lost 4 and a half minutes on one day because he simply wasn't good enough. Riding this Giro was always about Remco's future, to see how he would hold up, where he could learn, what his weaknesses were. You may think this was one huge failure for Remco, but it was far from that. The problem is that Remco himself and his fans actually started hoping, against better judgement, that he might be able to pull off some stunt. And while that may not have been the case, him NOT riding as a dom, has given him and the team a lot of crucial information.

Had Evenepoel been a dom for Almeida, he would have stuck with Almeida on the climb where Almeida got dropped. He wouldn't have tried to follow Bernal & co. He wouldn't have known he still lacks punch. Just like on the stage Bernal won, where he was badly positioned, it wouldn't even have mattered. Had he worked for Almeida on the Montalcino stage, he would have probably not even tried to hang on, just suck Serry's wheel to the finish at an easy pace after he did his job, not realizing how vulnerable he really was there. Had he been Almeida's dom, he would have lost dozens of minutes by the time they got to the Zoncolan stage, and Ineos would not have tried dropping him on the descent. He wouldn't have known just how much work he still has to do in order to compete, how big of a weakness his bikehandling, descending, positioning etc is.

I'm sure the team would have wanted Almeida to perform better in the first week, but this was the Giro of Remco's return, and Remco is the future of the team. What they have now is tons of valuable information about Remco. What they might have had, in your scenario, was Almeida currently being 9th instead of 10th.

For someone that says that logic is our friend it seems that yours it’s kind of going in the way that wind blows...

If Almeida hadn’t lost GC time on stage 4 he would be a second up or a second down Remco before this stage 16 and if Remco was working for Almeida he surely wouldn't be 12 minutes behind, why? Because before anything else, João was 8 minutes behind Bernal before this stage and not 12 and if João hadn’t be ordered to wait for Remco at stage 9 and 14 he would gain more or less 2 minutes on Remco until yesterday

So as far as what happened until yesterday we could already seen that Remco has not yet the conditions to be in GC contention. Surely it was foreseen by DQ that a young guy with lots of potential but without any competition or GT experience couldn’t cope with it but the Belgian dream and the sponsors behind it made it justifiable. In the end and as I see it it’s truly unfair for Remco because he is one of a kind IMO and also for João who deserve to be respected as the leader of DQ after what he’s done last year!
 
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Remco in today's post stage interview:

"We knew that this could happen. In the end I've been training only 2 months [my 2,5 was apprently overestimation xd] towards this Giro. Nothing and not enough to be 100% race ready."

Hmm, that's an interesting dimension to the team dynamics and might explain some of the hesitancy in the decision making that was displayed previously and some of the feelings that Almeida preferred to leave unsaid
 
I'm portuguese and i would love to defend joao almeida on this situation, but it was joao almeida's fault. He lost 5 min on a 2 category climb on stage 4, after that, obviously he would work for remco who was in better position. If he didn't lost 5 min on that stage, he would never work for remco. It was a good decision by quick step after stage four, don't blame the team for doing that, they saw in that moment remco in good shape and position, and with joao almeida in very difficult situation on gc, the most logic thing, would be joao work for remco.

It shouldn’t be the case at the first place! DQ must be clear since the start, the worst thing that you can do as a leader is to be ambiguous towards your team! You can’t say to someone that “you are the leader” then “maybe you are co-leader” then “you are definitely co-leader”. In those terms you are going to lose the men that are working for you, because we are talking of men, and in this case very young men! DQ were gambling with Remco’s condition to cope with a 3 week tour when he never done that and with a young guy that already had shown that he could!
 
On that case, it doesn't matter if ineos have a strong team around thomas, it doesn't make difference because pogi is so good that he just needs to follow thomas and ineos train in the mountains like he did last year with jumbo, and on the itt he beats thomas.
Ineos train works when they have a leader like froome or wiggins who can make differences on the itt for everyone, and then in the mountains they use the train to neutralize everyone.
I think roglic is better than thomas on the itt, and in the mountains he also have a train.

Based on what?
 
I'm portuguese and i would love to defend joao almeida on this situation, but it was joao almeida's fault. He lost 5 min on a 2 category climb on stage 4, after that, obviously he would work for remco who was in better position. If he didn't lost 5 min on that stage, he would never work for remco. It was a good decision by quick step after stage four, don't blame the team for doing that, they saw in that moment remco in good shape and position, and with joao almeida in very difficult situation on gc, the most logic thing, would be joao work for remco.
I agree completely. And the only thing i blame Almeida, is that he didn't start helping Remco in Montalcina until it was too late. Now you could say it didn't matter after all, but we didn't know that. But i still believe the biggest "culprit" was the team/management. They were insufficiently supported. This whole debate would not have started had there been better support for both riders.

For someone that says that logic is our friend it seems that yours it’s kind of going in the way that wind blows...

If Almeida hasn’t lost GC time on stage 4 he would be a second up or a second down Remco before this stage 16 and if Remco was working for Almeida he was not 12 minutes behind, why? Because before anything else, João was 8 minutes behind Bernal before this stage and not 12 and if João hadn’t be ordered to wait for Remco at stage 9 and 14 he would gain more or less 2 minutes on Remco untill yesterday

So as far as what happened untill yesterday we could already seen that Remco has not yet the conditions to be in GC contention. Surely it was foreseen by DQ that a young guy with lots of potential but without any competition or GT experience couldn’t cope with it but the Belgian dream and the sponsors behind it made it justifiable. In the end and as I see it it’s truly unfair for Remco because he is one of a kind IMO and also for João who deserve to be respected as the leader of DQ after what he’s done last year!
I'm not sure what you're getting at. Perhaps you believe that because i defend the team/Remco/João on certain points, that i can not be critical of them on other points?

I also have no idea what you mean about "If Almeida didn't lose 4 minutes"... But he did lose those 4 and a half minutes and Remco didn't. So what are you talking about (no offense, i don't know what you are saying).

All right then. I agree with the fact that if those information about Remco were valid (but they're apparently not that much) it could be actually very useful thing to have when preparing for the next GTs. But why the fck they had to use this particular Giro 2021 for this purpose with Remco not even completed a half of a proper preparation period? Why not Vuelta, why not Giro 2022? Does he really have to be the next Pogacar winning his first Tour at 22 (while imo not being that naturally predisopsed GT rider like Tadej)? Let's choose some long-term goals and try to acheive them one by one. Not trying to win all cycling races on the planet and becoming cycling god before turning 23.

That's how I see it. ;)
I think they have now realized the situation is much worse (descending, bikehandling, positioning) than they previously thought. Before, it was clearly "good enough" to win 1 week races where he was dominant. But a GT is a different matter, details become liabilities.

I think they genuinely didn't know what they could expect. Remco was doing well on training, so they didn't want to rule anything out. Perhaps also because he really wanted to know and get back to racing. He doesn't have to be the next TDF winner at 22, but why should he wait til next year? To come to the conclusion a year later, that his descending is simply not good enough, and lose an extra year? That would mean he would be 23 by the time he could start to compete. Sure that's still young enough, but it would be a wasted year in that regard.

He also wanted to get one GT under his belt before going to the Olympics. I assume because it is also the easiest way to get racing miles in your legs in a short period. For me, sending him to the Giro wasn't a mistake. They made plenty, but that wasn't one of them imho.

PS: he had 3 months to get ready for the Giro... but that included "getting on the bike". He wasn't allowed to ride for 2 months, and the day he was allowed back on the bike, was exactly 3 months before the start. That means 1st week only short low intensity rides and build up.
 
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It shouldn’t be the case at the first place! DQ must be clear since the start, the worst thing that you can do as a leader is to be ambiguous towards your team! You can’t say to someone that “you are the leader” then “maybe you are co-leader” then “you are definitely co-leader”. In those terms you are going to lose the men that are working for you, because we are talking of men, and in this case very young men! DQ were gambling with Remco’s condition to cope with a 3 week tour when he never done that and with a young guy that already had shown that he could!
The problem with joao on stage 4 was bad alimentation, nothing to do with that situations. You can see in the last days that he is riding with motivation and in great shape, so, the situation of the leadership or the fact that he is leaving the team, aren't a problem for joao.
 
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He forgot to eat.
Shouldn't the guys in the car take care of it? I've head the commentators saying that one of their responsibilities is to remind their riders when to eat. Especially when you're one of the leaders and it's a hard stage. If the hunger knock is real then I can understand why Almeida was so pissed in that interview. Almeida probably blames those guys while DQS management are like "it's your own fault".
But if it was hunger knock then why DQS said "Almeida had a bad day" instead of actually saying what it was. Maybe because they knew people will blame them.
This cumulated with the fact that DQS didn't help him on Sestola and left him to rot when he was dropping it's probably a bitter lesson Almeida has to take because he leaves and also thanks to the Belgian bias. They could've limit his losses to 3 minutes or even 2 but DQS was more than happy to sacrifice him early. That choice now bites them back.
I don't think we will see any new GC rider at DQS any time soon, the peloton saw the leadership treatment Almeida got.
 
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